Course Webcasting Frequently Asked Questions

How do I use it?

For instructors: request that your class get recorded, and remember to wear your microphone while teaching.
For students: go to webcast.ucsc.edu, find your course, and watch the lecture(s) you are interested in. A guide to the interface is available.

It says I need a password and/or the course is password protected.

Course lectures are password protected to protect the content as well as to comply with campus legal guidelines regarding copyright. Instructors will give out passwords to you to access the lectures. Passwords are not given out via the webcast service itself.

Which plugin(s) do I need to view webcasts?

As of Fall 2017, you do not need a plugin to view webcast content. Just about all modern desktop browser applications (Chrome, Firefox, Safari, Edge) will play webcast content just fine.

How do get my course to be webcast if I am an instructor?

The instructor for a course of record may fill our our webcasting request form to have their lecture captured. Note that your course will need to be scheduled in a room with lecture capture capability.

How long after a class ends will a webcast of it be available online?

Generally, we will have the lecture available within 10 minutes of the course ending. Some features like slide segmentation take longer than this to apply to the webcast and so these features may not be available until a few hours after the lecture is initially posed online.

Only the instructor for a course may request that their course be recorded/webcast.

I have a disability and this would be much easier for me to use if it was captioned, can you help?

Yes. While we are currently unable to caption every course we record, if you have a disability-related need for captioning we are very happy to get specific courses captioned for you. Please request this service through the Disability Resource Center's website.

I don't see slide segmentations; where are they?

In order to deliver the webcast to you as soon as possible, we start by delivering a "rough cut" that has the video and audio, but does not include other features such as slide segmentation and text search. After the system processes the video to calculate these elements we add them to the video. This can take a few hours. If you your class just ended and you don't see segmented slides yet this is probably what's happening. If you wait, they will be added (you may need to reload the web page to see the newly segmented version).

What technology are you using?

Opencast. Opencast is an open source application for capturing and presenting classroom content created by a consortium of educational institutions. You can learn more on the Opencast website.

Can I use this on my mobile device?

Yes. Currently the experience is much less rich when played back on a mobile device (you only get the video and the audio, without any of the cool engagement tools unless you request "Request Desktop Site" from your mobile browser) but it will work. We expect that future versions will further improve the mobile experience.

Please be aware that it requires a considerable amount of data to stream video. Depending on the details of your data plan, significant use of video over mobile may incur additional charges from your wireless provider.

Can I get access to my old recordings?

Webcast recordings are generally available only during the quarter during which a class is in session. Internally, we usually have archives of old recordings saved for 5 calendar quarters from when the class originally occurred (e.g. a class recorded in Fall 2016 will be deleted after the end of Winter 2017). Upon request of the class instructor (via ITRequest), we can make an archived class's recordings available. While we can make an entire class series available, we do not have a way to provide access to just a single recording. Please note that republishing archived recordings is a manual process and so it may take several days to fulfill a request. Also, be aware that occasionally there may be compatibility issues with archived recordings that make them difficult or impossible to re-publish.

How do I get help?

There is a guide to the new interface available on our website. If you have a question that is not covered in the FAQ, please contact us at webcast@ucsc.edu or put in a ticket at itrequest.ucsc.edu. We're happy to assist however we can.